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The Picture of Dorian Gray | Study Guide

Oscar Wilde

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Course Hero Literature Instructor Russell Jaffe explains the main characters in Oscar Wilde's novel The Picture of Dorian Gray.

The Picture of Dorian Gray | Characters

Character Description
Dorian Gray Dorian is a beautiful young man whose magical relationship with his portrait allows him to remain young while the portrait ages. Read More
Basil Hallward An artist, Basil is attracted to Dorian and paints the magical picture of him. Read More
Lord Henry Wotton Also known as "Harry," Henry is an older gentleman whose combined cynical and hedonistic wisdom influences Dorian. Read More
Sibyl Vane Sibyl is a 17-year-old actress and Dorian's brief romantic partner. Read More
James Vane Sibyl Vane's brother, James Vane swears vengeance on Dorian after Sibyl Vane kills herself. Read More
Lady Agatha Henry Wotton's aunt, Lady Agatha takes Dorian under her wing to introduce him to society.
Lady Brandon An upper-class hostess, Lady Brandon introduces Dorian Gray to Henry Wotton.
Sir Thomas Burdon Sir Thomas is a radical member of Parliament and a guest at Aunt Agatha's luncheon.
Alan Campbell Alan Campbell, a scientist, is Dorian's former intimate whom he blackmails into disposing of Basil's body.
Lady Alice Chapman Lady Alice is the daughter of Lady Narborough—Dorian's hostess on the night he disposes of Basil's body.
Lady Alice Chapman's husband Lady Alice Chapman's husband is a friendly but dull guest of Lady Narborough.
Sir Geoffrey Clouston The Duchess of Monmouth's brother, Sir Geoffrey accidentally kills James Vane.
Margaret Devereux Margaret Devereux is Dorian Gray's mother. Her father has her husband murdered shortly before Dorian's birth, and Margaret herself dies within a few months.
Mrs. Erlynne Mrs. Erlynne is a lisping, red-haired guest of Lady Narborough; described as a "pushing nobody," she is a social climber.
Mr. Erskine of Treadley Mr. Erskine is a wise, but largely silent, friend of Aunt Agatha's.
Lord Faudel Lord Faudel is a bald, intelligent, and boring friend of Aunt Agatha's.
Lord George Fermor Lord Fermor is Henry's Uncle George; he reveals Dorian's family history.
Madame de Ferrol Madame de Ferrol is a much-married aristocrat— and a subject of discussion at Lady Narborough's party.
Francis Francis is Dorian's servant in the latter part of the novel.
Lady Gwendolen Lady Gwendolen is Henry's sister and Dorian's partner in a scandalous love affair.
Hansom driver This unnamed man drives Dorian to the opium den.
Duchess of Harley The Duchess of Harley is a plump, good-natured guest of Aunt Agatha's.
Ernest Harrowden Ernest Harrowden is a guest of Lady Narborough—although he has no enemies, he is not well liked by his friends.
Mr. Hubbard Mr. Hubbard is the frame maker who helps Dorian move his portrait upstairs into hiding.
Mr. Hubbard's assistant Mr. Hubbard's assistant helps Mr. Hubbard move the portrait upstairs.
Mr. Isaacs Mr. Isaacs manages the theater where Dorian falls for Sibyl Vane.
Lord Kelso Lord Kelso—Dorian Gray's mean-spirited maternal grandfather—raises him following the deaths of Dorian's parents.
Mrs. Leaf Mrs. Leaf is Dorian's housekeeper.
Hetty Merton Hetty Merton is the young woman Dorian romances but decides not to seduce as part of his effort to change late in the novel.
Duchess of Monmouth Gladys, the Duchess of Monmouth, flirts with Dorian and verbally fences with Henry in Chapter 17.
Duke of Monmouth A weary 60-year-old man, the Duke of Monmouth is Gladys's husband.
Lady Narborough The aristocratic Lady Narborough hosts a party in Chapter 15, and suggests Dorian is in love.
Lady Ruxton Lady Ruxton is a plain, overdressed, middle-aged guest of Lady Narborough.
Adrian Singleton Adrian Singleton is a man Dorian encounters at an opium den and later ruins.
Thornton Thornton is the gamekeeper for the hunt at which James Vane is killed.
Mrs. Vandeleur Mrs. Vandeleur is a saintly but dowdy friend of Aunt Agatha's.
Mrs. Vane Mrs. Vane is the impoverished and shallow mother of James and Sibyl Vane.
Victor Victor is Dorian's servant early in the novel; Dorian dismisses him after killing Basil.
Oscar Wilde Oscar Wilde, the book's author, writes a preface to the text.
Woman in opium den This unnamed woman is someone who was ruined by Dorian decades earlier; by calling him "Prince Charming," she alerts James Vane to his identity.
Lady Victoria Wotton Lady Victoria is Lord Henry's wife, also referred to as Lady Henry; she eventually divorces him.
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